Chan Newsletter

August 8, 1988 

Chinese Ch’an and Its Relevance in North America Today (Part 2)

(A lecture given by Master Sheng-yen at the University of Toronto on May 7, 1988.) What is Chinese Ch'an? I will discuss this in four sections: 1) Chinese Ch'an refers to methods of spiritual practice transmitted from India to China. 2) Chinese Ch'an methods are flexible and adaptable. 3) The aim of Chinese Ch'an is sudden enlightenment. 4) Chinese Ch'an can be practiced in everyday life. more

June 8, 1988 

Chinese Ch’an and Its Relevance in North America Today (Part 1)

(A lecture given by Master Sheng-yen at the University of Toronto on May 7, 1988.) Our topic addresses the relevance of Chinese Ch'an for people living in North America. The talk will be divided into four sections: 1. What is life like in North America? 2. What is Ch'an? 3. What is Chinese Ch'an? 4. Do North Americans need Chinese Ch'an? more

March 8, 1988 

Mind, Matter, and Emptiness

(Lecture given by Master Sheng-yen on the Surangama Sutra, January 5, 1986.) Ananda continues to question the Buddha about the essence of seeing, and he asks how he can tell the seeing from the seen. More and more Ananda is beginning to understand what the Buddha says. In this section of the Sutra there are three important questions asked: 1. Who or what is doing the seeing? 2. What is seen? 3. What is the relationship between the seer and the seen? more

February 8, 1988 

Human, Hinayana, and Mahayana

(Lecture given by Master Sheng-yen on the Surangama Sutra, Sunday, June 7, 1987.) The Buddha saw that Ananda strove not for his personal enlightenment, but the enlightenment of all beings. Thus Ananda was no longer interested in the sravaka or pratyekabuddha paths, which are associated with self-deliverance alone and are part of Hinayana practice. The Buddha then prepared to reveal the supreme Mahayana teaching to him.more

December 8, 1987 

The Elements of Consciousness

(Lecture given by Master Sheng-yen on the Surangama Sutra, Sunday, November 15, 1987.) I want to begin by talking about consciousness, because not everyone is familiar with what the term means, and there are many who have not heard of the sixth, seventh, or eighth consciousness. Consciousness can be understood as having three different forms, or aspects, into which are divided the eight levels of consciousness (shown in parentheses). The first form is the consciousness of contact (1-5). more